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Sterling High grad killed Saturday in Roscoe

ROSCOE – A 2002 Sterling High School graduate was killed Saturday by her ex-boyfriend in the Winnebago County village of Roscoe, investigators said.

According to published reports, the body of Ashley N. Hardin, 38, was found around 7:30 a.m. in an alley 10 minutes away from her home. The cause of her death was not released.

Rayshawn D. Smith, 46, of Rockford, is in Winnebago County jail on $2 million bond, charged with first-degree murder, aggravated kidnapping and aggravated unlawful restraint.

A video of Smith, posted on Facebook, starts out: “People are going call me crazy-er, and to wonder why I did what I did.” In it, he accuses Hardin of “deception,” and says he gave her “every opportunity to walk away.”

His next appearance is Aug. 31, when he will be arraigned. The state’s attorney is seeking an indictment.

Smith faces 20 years to life if convicted of first-degree murder.

He was convicted in 1995 in Winnebago County of home invasion causing injury. The length of his sentence was not available on Full Court Enterprise, the county’s public court documents website, but he still was imprisoned in 2001, FCE records show.

The Winnebago County Sheriff’s Department is investigating.

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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